Liberia Warned Against Cyber Attacks

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Participants at the LIBTECO training

The Liberia Telecommunications Corporation (LIBTELCO) has warned public and private institutions about cyber attacks and urged them to protect their networks.

The head of Cyber Security at LIBTELCO, Al-Hassan Sheriff, who spoke at the opening of a three-day national cyber security training yesterday said the use of cyber security to minimize technological threat cannot be overemphasized in Liberia.

He said Liberia is open to possible cyber attack by hackers, but did not say if there is an imminent threat.

The three-day training is intended to sharpen the minds of participants, especially about the importance of cyber security in protecting technological materials.

“We need to properly protect our networks and other electronic materials which we use to access the internet, which is important for the growth of our institutions,” he cautioned.

The training, he said, was a follow-up to the one held in August, where participants encouraged LIBTELCO and its partners to organize another opportunity to help them acquire knowledge about cyber security and how to protect their institutions from hackers.

The General Manager of Hak Technology, Edmund Kloh, said the protection of public and private sector institutions against hackers should not be underestimated.

He said electronic appliances in Liberia are powerless against cyber attacks and “We should not ignore the potential danger that posed by hackers.”

According to Kloh, cyber hackers are very professional about attacking networks and other electronic materials; and as such, it is advisable for all institutions to safeguard their networks with cyber security features.

He admonished the participants to protect their networks and other electronic gadgets that are used to access the internet.

“Hackers are noted for using any medium to launch attacks, and if cyber security features are not designed for networks and electronic materials they are opened to potential attacks,” he said.

Desmond Israel, the chief trainer at the workshop, said the utilization of cyber security in the country should be the collective effort of all Liberians, on grounds that cyber security awareness helps to ensure that revenues, productivity and institutional integrity are maintained.

“Ignoring cyber security could cause an institution’s integrity to spoil because of cyber attacks by hackers who are prepared to cause serious network damage,” he noted.

The workshop is organized by LIBTELCO, Hak Technology, and TechMedia International.

Participants include representatives from the Central Bank of Liberia, Liberia Bank for Development and Investment, National Port Authority, Orange Liberia, and the Liberia Immigration Service. Others are from the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Ministry of Public Works, Liberia Electricity Corporation and Security Expert Guard Agency of Liberia, among others.

Cyber attack is any type of offensive maneuver employed by nation-states, individuals, groups, or organizations that target computer information systems, infrastructures, computer networks, and/or personal computer devices by various means of malicious acts usually originating from an anonymous source that either steals, alters, or destroys a specified target by hacking into a susceptible system.

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